Boundary Eco and Forest School

 

What is Forest School?

Forest School originated in Scandinavia and was brought to the UK in the early 1990s. Sessions are always child led (to foster independence), long term (to build trust and relationships) and outside (to gain the many physical and emotional benefits from being in nature). The Forest School ethos aims to promote students’ confidence, social skills, sense of self-worth and emotional well being in an outdoors environment.

Children are not directly taught but are encouraged to find things out for themselves through play i.e. games, stories, creative expression and sharing. Through play, the child develops their initiative and imagination (problem-solving), learns resilience and resourcefulness (perseverance and determination), how to give and ask for help and support from peers (emotional intelligence and teamwork), and how to appropriately self-manage risk in an increasingly risky world.

 

 

What happens in Forest School?

Activities are provided during a forest school session but the emphasis is on the children choosing what they do. Activities might include den building, log transportations, cutting firewood and fire building, crafts such as making a dream catcher or clay creatures, group games, flora and fauna ID as well as stories and collaborative activities.

The obvious benefits of improved coordination and physical health from doing activities outside are enhanced by opportunities to develop imagination and initiative; problem-solving and perseverance. Children are encouraged to try things out and learn from experience, rather than rigidly following a set of instructions. This often involves learning how to work as a team to get something done, feeling comfortable with asking for and offering help and learning how to cope with failure or setbacks. These are seen as important skills to take with them into the adult world.

 

Meet Jenna Benson!

At Boundary, we are lucky to our own Forest school practitioner Jenna, who has been with us for nearly a year now.  Before Jenna was a practitioner for outside learning she was a park ranger for four years. When asked what impact Jenna feels Forest school has on children, she said;

“Forest school is important for a child’s emotional intelligence and well-being. What’s important for a child’s development is what the additional nature-experience gives us, in respect of awareness, mobility and space to learn. Children gain more structure to handle their emotions and grow in the ability to cope with unusual situations and reflect on their own head space. Outdoor leaning allows for better communication, gives them the extra space to gain skills which would be beneficial for survival in more ways than one.”

Thank you Jenna for implementing this opportunity for our children.  

 

Forest School Fun!

Forest School Fun!

What a fantastic afternoon we had exploring our new Forest School Area. We made 'fat balls for the birds', pretended we were squirrels and hid food ready for hibernation and built shelters that we could hide in. However, I think for most of us our favourite part was...

The Wonderful Outdoors!

The Wonderful Outdoors!

We took part in our second Forest School session this week, and it was possibly even more enjoyable than our first! Although this time it wasn't raining, the ground was still wet and muddy with the previous days rain! We joined with Reception in the woodland area for...

Holly Class Forest School Fun!

Holly Class Forest School Fun!

It was a chilly afternoon but Holly Class need not worry- we made a fire to keep ourselves warm! How super exciting! We learnt about how to stay safe around a fire and were then able to toast marshmallows over it- we all agreed they tasted delicious, especially Mrs...

Forest School

Forest School

Nursery enjoyed our first Forest School session this week! We had very different weather for our morning and afternoon sessions, however the sessions were enjoyed equally by all children! Firstly we got ready into our waterproofs, talking about what we thought might...

If you go down to the woods today…

If you go down to the woods today…

...you may find Holly and Willow Class! On Tuesday and Wednesday, we travelled to Salisbury Woods to see what they looked like in Autumn. We noticed "lots of leaves everywhere" and they were "all different colours...orange, yellow, brown and red". It was a bit chilly...

Family learning in Nature

Family learning in Nature

The children and parents were Nature Detectives. Parents learnt ways to support their child's reading. writing and maths with a Nature theme. They learnt how to support learning at home and in school and each family made a scrap book to record their learning. Parents...

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